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From "David Smiley (" <>
Subject Re: VelocityResponseWriter's future
Date Sat, 10 Dec 2011 06:12:29 GMT
  The /browse UI pages have definitely gotten a bit long in the tooth, to
the point that it's a maintenance nightmare IMO. Perhaps it was inevitable
given the nature of the technology; it would be the same situation with
JSP/ASP/PHP.  FWIW, in my experience with Endeca (a Solr competitor) their
JSP based sample app was even worse of a maintenance nightmare.  I demo what
Solr can do using /browse unmodified, but I otherwise don't use it. I prefer
AJAX-Solr for a variety of reasons:
* It's a technology you could not only start with but ultimately go to
production with, particularly in corporate environments where the
denial-of-service risk isn't as great as the public web.
* Browser centric web development is on the rise, with a benefit of being
agnostic of the middle tier technology stack which can tend to completely
isolate different pools of developers (e.g. a Java guy vs RoR guy vs...)
* It's a framework, yet its light weight and doesn't get in my way.  I treat
it as sort of a template framework that I modify as I see fit for my app. 
There's not a lot to understanding how it works.  No magic.

That said, I think AJAX-Solr is not quite where it needs to be.  I'd like to
see it move into the role that the /browse UI has in demoing a large variety
of Solr's functionality against a known sample data set.  It doesn't yet
have all the "widgets" to do that.  I also think it could strongly benefit
from using a JavaScript template technology like jQuery templates which I've
used to great success with AJAX-Solr in place of AJAX-Solr's "Theme" junk.

Sorry if this turned into an AJAX-Solr advertisement but it is my opinion
that adopting AJAX-Solr for the role /browse has is ultimately a better
thing than a Velocity/JSP/PHP/ASP page based UI.

~ David Smiley

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